When Raj Babbar recalled losing films to Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor

Raj Babbar once remembered being replaced in movies before making a name for himself in the film industry. The actor, who is celebrating his 70th birthday on Thursday, even lost a part to Amitabh Bachchan after he already received the signing fee. Read also| Good content is back thanks to OTT: Raj Babbar

In a 2016 interview, Raj admitted that he was replaced by Amitabh in the 1982 film Shakti, which also starred his future wife Smita Patil. That same year, he was replaced by Shashi Kapoor in Namak Halal, which also starred both Amitabh and Smita.

Asked about his replacement in Shakti, Raj had told India TV: “It’s the truth. I used to play plays in Delhi and Salim-Javed (screenwriter duo Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar) picked me up here. My screen test was shown to Dilip Kumar sahab (who played Amitabh’s father in the film). Ramesh Sippy was the director. I was selected. But for some commercial reasons, I was removed from the film.” When asked if it was because creators thought Amitabh would make them more money, Raj said, “But that’s only right, he was a star at the time and I was a completely new face.”

When asked if it is true that he was also replaced in Namak Halal, Raj said, “Sir mere saath aise haadse hote rahe. Jo mujhe milna chahiye tha wo chheen ke koi aur le jaata tha. Lekin chheen ke nahi kahunga. ( These accidents.) happened to me often. Whatever I wanted, someone would snatch me away. Well, not really snatched. Prakash Mehra had signed me for two movies including Namak Halal. I told him I have no place in Mumbai, so you will have to provide me a home he gave me a place to stay for a year but after he told me we cant give you this role i said i would still use this house for a That house is the reason why I was able to build a house for me in Mumbai.”

Raj also revealed that his breakthrough role in Insaaf Ka Taraazu, which featured him as a rapist, also came to him after no one agreed to accept the negative character. The actor later became popular for being able to play both negative and positive characters on the screen. The actor-politician was last seen in the 2021 Hotstar web series Dil Bekaaar.

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